Mistress of Rome
Reviewed by- linda (2010/09/29, 05:27 PM)
(3.5 stars) Ancient Rome is wonderfully portrayed in this book, with awesome details of first century Roman political culture. Quinn tells the story from three perspectives; Thea a Jewish slave girl, Arius a gladiator and Lepida a spoiled upper class Roman citizen. The dominant theme is the harshness of life for slaves and Gladiators. They are a powerless subset of roman society that are poorly treated and disposable; figuratively as they can be sold and literally, as forms of entertainment. The book is well researched and feels authentic. I enjoyed reading about Emperor Domitian. History is replete with depraved men like him, yet it still puzzles me how a society allows such a person to exist. In terms of action, there’s lots of violence and treachery, both in and out of the arena and the descriptions are vivid. A few things did bother me. I found moving between first and third person confusing and at times there is too much dialog; stalling things a bit. I love a complex plot however, and this one is layered with great characters, engrossing historical facts and a little romance.Back.

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